How to select a good abacus and mental arithmetic education center? 作者：廖正輝 Author: David Liao 2005年04月21日 (Date: April 21, 2005) 許多人質疑在電腦化的時代，為何還要學習珠算（算盤）這古老的中華國粹呢？就如同有了汽車、飛機，人類為何還要慢跑、散步一樣的道理。「珠心算是數學之母」這句話即代表良好的珠心算學習，可奠定數學學科最好的基礎。而珠心算的學習意義，主要是培養學童正確、快速的計算能力，在學習過程中累積了耐力、毅力及確實的本質訓練。所以說珠心算的學習，對於學童的腦力開發具有不可忽視的價值。然而在坊間這麼多的珠心算教學中心，我們該如何做正確的抉擇呢？是純粹以價錢來考量嗎？或是以比賽得獎杯來比較呢？在這裏我們以專業的角度提供幾點意見給家長們參考： Many people question why we need to learn abacus such an old Chinese Quintessence while we are in computerized era? The reason is simple as why people still jogging, take a walk when we have vehicles and aircrafts? There is an old saying: Abacus and mental arithmetic is the mother of mathematics. It means accurate learning in abacus and mental arithmetic will create the best foundation for mathematics. Part of learning abacus and mental arithmetic is to train children the capability of accurate and fast calculation. During the process, children will accumulate tolerance, accuracy and perseverance. It’s hard to ignore how learning abacus and mental arithmetic impact on brain development for children. However, there are so many abacus education centers around. How parents make a correct choice for their children? Based on the tuition fee? Or determined by the numbers of trophies the center got? Below we like to give our professional points for parents’references. （一）、先珠算後心算：在珠心算教學過程中，珠算是基礎，透過算盤的操作，讓學習者了解四則計算的變化及方法。隨著技巧的熟練，學習者腦中的影像逐漸建立，透過影像的模擬操作即產生心算的功能。簡言之，應先學習珠算，再學習心算。許多坊間心算班，強調不用算盤，或用手指比出答案，並不是正確的學習方法，在學習過程中容易有算癖及其他學習障礙產生。 （一）、Learn abacus arithmetic before mental arithmetic: During the abacus and mental arithmetic teaching process, abacus arithmetic is the foundation. By operating abacus, students understand the arithmetic calculation and its method. After learners getting familiar to the skill, they visualize the calculation in their mind. Then, through visualized operation, the mental arithmetic function been created. Briefly speaking, learning sequences are: abacus arithmetic first and mental arithmetic later. Many abacus centers emphasis on finger movement calculation before abacus arithmetic. It’s not an accurate way of learning abacus. Lacking of rigid foundation (abacus arithmetic), will create barriers during learning other subjects and to cultivate “calculation fault”easily. （二）、加減乘除全面學習：珠心算的教學進度應是全面性的。包括三大部份： （二）、Comprehensive learning on addition/subtraction/multiplication/division: Teaching schedule of abacus and mental arithmetic calculation should be comprehensive. It includes three parts:
View abacus addition/subtraction, view abacus multiplication, view abacus division
View mental addition/subtraction, view mental multiplication, view mental division
Read addition/subtraction, read multiplication, read division
其他部份包括傳票，連乘除，應用計算，開平方，開立方等都是珠心算學習的範圍。如果只強調心算的學習，甚至都沒有乘除算的教學過程，當然都是不完整的。它無法將所學運用於學校課程及日常生活中，且因學習不夠全面，答案錯誤連連，是否比沒學還糟糕呢？ Others like slip file calculation, continuous multiplication and division, calculation in practice, square roots and cube roots are in the range of learning abacus and mental arithmetic. If emphasis only mental calculation learning without the teaching process of abacus multiplication and division, it’s incomplete. It can’t integrate into what children learn to school program and daily life. No mention incomplete comprehensive learning which cause the wrong answers a lot. Will it be worse than never learn it? （三）、專業師資是必要：珠心算的師資，是不容易培育的。它不如美語、電腦及數學等學科，在正規的大學教育系中，都有相關的課程可研讀及進修，所以師資不虞匱乏。而珠心算師資，在技藝方面須長時間的訓練學習，至珠心算皆有段位以上程度。在教學方法上更要透過專業團體協會指導模擬，才能進入教學領域。除了以上基本能力外，專業的珠心算教學中心，應能夠提供完整的教學進度或課程表供家長比較及了解，如此才是負責的做法。 （三）、Professional teachers are essential: It’s not easy to train abacus and mental arithmetic teachers. It’s unlike subjects such as English, computer and mathematic. Teachers for those subjects can be trained through related program, or teachers can study for it. That’s why teachers for those subjects are never insufficient. However, training for teachers of abacus and mental arithmetic takes long time for those teachers to reach advance level. Way of teaching needs to be guide and simulated by professional associations. Except to above basic ability, professional abacus and mental arithmetic teaching centers shall be able to provide complete teaching schedule or program for parents to have comparison and understanding. It’s a responsible center shall do. （四）、定期檢定及優質比賽：珠心算的教學過程是階段性的，平均每半年參加一次各民間協會的檢定考試有其必要性。一方面可印證所學有否吸收，一方面可鼓勵學童更上層樓。我們建議在低級數的學習，儘量珠算及心算同時應試（十級至四級珠心算同步檢定）。如此，珠算的熟練度才足以顯現在心算的表現上。而心算能力強的學童可從三級以上有更明顯的提昇，資質優異的學童更可能在短時間內突破至段位以上（最高十段）。除了檢定之外，偶可帶學生參加一、二項比賽（建議半年一次即可）。但坊間民間團體及才藝班舉辦的比賽繁多，如何選擇優質比賽，而不流於過度商業化，應注意： Periodically verification tests and high quality competition: Teaching procedure of abacus and mental arithmetic is in several stages. General speaking, it’s necessary to attend verification exam held by non-governmental association every half year. The exam will prove what students absorb on the other hand, it accelerate children to move upgrade. Suggest joining exam of abacus and mental arithmetic (level 10 to level 4) simultaneously for lower level students. By having the exam, students are more familiar to abacus arithmetic, better performance for them swap to mental arithmetic. Students with better mental arithmetic ability could be able to advance significantly. Students with excellent endowments could possibly reach advance (highest advance 10) in short term. Except verification exam, can register one subject or two subjects of a competition for students occasionally. (Suggest joining competition every 6 months.) However, choose the good quality competition you join, as there is many centers hold competition in the markets. How to select a good competition and not been too commercialized. All shall pay attention to:
Abacus arithmetic and mental arithmetic are both in the competition.
Level of competition can’t be too low. Exam shall be at least or above abacusand mental arithmetic level 6
Time can’t be too short as it will become number writing competition.Each subject takes at least 3 min or more.
Awarding ratio can’t be 100%.
珠心算的學習是長時間努力的累積才可顯現其具體的成果，不宜走捷徑，只攻心算，而沒有穩固的珠算基礎，也不宜譁眾取寵到處花錢比賽領取獎杯。應以穩健踏實的腳步，規劃2至3年的學習進度，循序漸進，由淺入深，將所學融會貫通，轉化為心算能量，才是一家好的珠心算教學中心所應盡的本份。 Abacus and mental arithmetic learning takes long time for learners to accumulate rigid achievement. Better not to take short cut. Shall not focus only in mental arithmetic and don’t have rigid abacus arithmetic foundation. It’s not good either to spend money for many competitions to get trophies. One shall take stable steps; plan 2-3 years learning procedure from easy to difficult to master in all subjects and transform energy into mental arithmetic. This is the duty a good abacus and mental arithmetic education center shall do.